Best Resource hubs

A temporarily blocked mind can transpire. Beat it by utilizing the following Best Resource hubs to discover slanting themes and get inspired.

  1. HubSpot’s Blog Topic Generator: in case you’re taking a shot at your article timetable and need to create a couple of thoughts immediately, utilize this to produce an entire week of subjects in light of the catchphrases you enter.
  2. BuzzSumo: an incredible approach to discover subjects that are inclining via web-based networking media. Enter your watchwords or a URL into their inquiry bar and you will get a diagram of famous points. You can utilize it to substance out a current thought or to locate an alternate edge on your subject.
  3. Portent’s Content Idea Generator: here’s a unique instrument that can enable you to locate a one of a kind point on the subject you’re expounding on. Enter your catchphrase and it will concoct a title for your article or blog entry. You can keep clicking until you locate a fascinating thought.
  4. Google Trends: like BuzzSumo, it enables you to stay on top of trending points. It tracks the most ebb and flow patterns utilizing web look terms and it can channel them in light of your geographic area.
  5. Quora: utilize this to discover inquiries in your specialty that aren’t addressed and utilize them as a subject for your next blog entry. Regardless of whether every one of the inquiries are replied, you can at present give an alternate standpoint through your unique content.
  6. LinkedIn Pulse: another incredible approach to identify what’s trending and what your industry is discussing. It pulls the substance from your system and the channels you take after. You can likewise look at Google Plus’  What’s Hot section,  Facebook’s Trending Section, and Twitter Trends.

Research

Now and again you have to discover valid hotspots for your article and give valuable insights and information. The apparatuses beneath will help you with all your research needs.

  1. Google Scholar: on the off chance that you require insightful articles to go down what you paper, look no farther than Google Scholar. You can seek a large number of sources including articles, proposals, books, edited compositions, and court opinions.
  2. The Free Library: it contains a gigantic accumulation of periodicals from many leading publications covering different points, for example, business, communication, amusement, etc. The article gathering incorporates articles going back to 1984 and in addition, recently distributed articles added to the site day by day.
  3. ProfNet: another approach to get significant specialists to cite in your story. Join as a writer, present your request, and the site will associate you with the perfect individuals for your article.
  4. Help a Reporter Out (HARO): associates writers and content creators with brands and applicable master sources. Valuable for getting direct experiences, statements, and opinions.
  5. Atlas: on the off chance that you require graphs, charts, or data representation, try this out. The device enables you to look for any subject conceivable and it will give you a realistic in light of latest research information. Utilize it to get background data or crisp information on a point you’re inquiring about.

The Perfect Grammar and Style

Regardless of how great your command of the English dialect is, checking sentence structure, spelling, and style is fundamental and can spare you from humiliating yourself. The apparatuses beneath will guarantee your composition is fit as a fiddle.

  1. Hemingway App: if you tend to get wordy in your writing and need to rid your articles of any fluff, this tool will help to to get rid of any sentences that are too complex and improve readability.
  2. Use English Punctuation Correctly: this article gives you a crash course in English punctuation along with a downloadable cheat sheet.
  3. Grammarly: checks your writing for common grammar and spelling mistakes, shows suggestions to improve your style, tells you which words are overused, and even checks your content for plagiarism. It’s available as a browser extension, web tool, and desktop app.
  4. GrammarGirl: a must when you need quick and dirty grammar tips. Simple explanations that go straight to the point will clear up any confusion when it comes to grammar rules.
  5. Readability Score: writing for the web requires a different style of writing than what you’ve used in college or high school. Your readability score will tell you how easy or how difficult it is to understand your article and give you suggestions where you can improve.
  6. Common Errors in English Usage: avoid making some of the most common mistakes in the English language with this tool. You can read the entire book online, download it as an ebook, or get a daily tip on Twitter.

Read more on APA and MLA Referencing Styles

Dictionaries

The following tools will help you always find the right word or phrase for your article as well as make sure the phrase you’re using doesn’t have any negative connotations.

  1. Dictionary.com: will help you define the meaning of a word, find synonyms and antonyms, and listen to audio pronunciations. They also have a blog full of useful grammar tips.
  2. Thesaurus.com: if you need just a synonym or antonym, this online thesaurus will have your back. It contains more than three million synonyms and antonyms and offers the ability to filter search results by relevance, word length, and complexity.
  3. Urban Dictionary: the internet brought along many new phrases and words that have completely inappropriate meanings. If you’ve heard a phrase that you think would be perfect for your article, run it through the Urban Dictionary first to ensure you’re not crossing any boundaries.
  4. Idioms and Phrases: for all those times when you need a play on words or the right phrase to spice up your article, this section of the Free Online Dictionary will generate the correct idiom and show you how to use it.
  5. The Elements of Style: considered to be the writer’s bible, this online version of the classic book will show you how to use the rules, when to break them, and help you improve your writing overall.

Organization and Productivity

Whether you’re blogging for yourself, for clients, or working on your next novel, you need a way to organize your ideas.

  1. Evernote: store all your ideas, organize them into notebooks, and clip articles from the internet for your research. It comes as a desktop app, phone app, and a handy browser extension.
  2. Trello: if you need a way to keep track of your deadlines and different writing projects, add Trello to your workflow. Create boards for different categories, clients, or chapters of your book to get an instant overview of where you are in the writing process. You can even collaborate with your clients, other writers, and editors.
  3. Toggl: track time spent on writing projects and improve your productivity. It’s a simple tool that you can use on the web or as a browser extension.

Writing Apps

Only stained glass windows can sacrifice clarity for beauty. Writers, not so much.

There is no shortage of writing software available today. If you’re looking for a Microsoft Office alternative, look no further than these apps.

  1. Google Docs: gives you the ability to collaborate with someone on a writing project. You can see the edits in real time and share your documents with everyone. Best of all, your documents are stored in the cloud so you don’t have to worry about backing them up.
  2. Byword: if you’re looking for a distraction-free writing app, Byword could be the tool for you. It’s available in an iOS and Mac version that lets you write in simple markdown. It syncs with DropBox and even lets you publish directly to WordPress, Blogger, Medium, and Tumblr.
  3. Scrivener: even though it’s touted as a program that will help you publish your next book, many bloggers and writers swear by it, and use it on a daily basis. Use it to create outlines, flesh out your story, organize your writing, and more.

Writing Blogs and Communities

  1. Men With Pens: a site written by freelance writers full of useful advice. It also features opinionated pieces and a dose of snarky humor that will not only improve your writing but help you take your business to the next level.
  2. The Renegade Writer Blog: full of great advice aimed at freelance writers, from the authors of The Renegade Writer.
  3. WritersCafe: if you want to expand your network and meet other writers, sign up for an account with WritersCafe. This is an online writing community where writers can post their work, get reviews, befriend other writers, and much more.
  4. Writing.com: whether you want to share your writing or offer feedback to other writers, this is the website for you.

Polish Your Writing

Writers can face many challenges on a daily basis, from finding ideas to making sure their writing conveys the right message and tone. Use the tools above to polish your writing and impress your readers and clients.

APA and MLA Referencing Styles

As a student, professional writer, or even a blogger, you probably know all about citing publications and books, but how much do you know about citing online sources? Today, most of us turn to the Internet to find information, it’s not unusual to find an online source that has relevant APA and MLA Referencing Styles

Even if you’re writing a blog post on a personal site, referencing another website can save you a lot of legal hassle down the road. To help you out, we’ve put together this post that will show you how to properly cite online sources in APA and MLA Style.

Citing Online Resources Using APA Style

The APA (American Psychology Association) Style is mostly used to cite sources within the social sciences

In-Text Citations

1. If you are referencing an idea from a publication, include the author’s last name and the publication year. Example: “Smith (1938) believed formula X would change the world of chemistry.”

2. If you are directly quoting or paraphrasing a work, also include the page number. Example: According to Smith (1938) he was the first to discover formula X (p.238). Example: Smith (1938) wrote “I am the first to discover formula X” (p.238).

(Note: Inclusion of the page number for paraphrases is not mandatory under APA guidelines but it is encouraged.) 3. If the author name is not included in the relevant passage, then use the (author last name, publication year, page number) formulation at the end. Example: The first known instance of formula X appeared in a book published during the Great Depression (Jones, 1938, p.238). If no author name is available, use the title of the article followed by the year. Almost all online sources follow the above rules for in-text citations.

References APA Style requires that references include the following information (example: see image below): Author name The publication date in parentheses which includes the year, month, and day Title of the document Title of the publication Volume number The URL where the source was retrieved from.

In some cases, such as blog posts, lecture notes, ebook formats, or social media updates, you are required to include the format description as well.

For sources that are freely available, include the words “Retrieved from” in front of the URL. If the source you’re citing has to be purchased or subscribed to, include the words “Available from” before the complete URL.

If a source includes a DOI (Digital Object Identifier), you need to include it at the end of your reference. Certain formats such as forum posts require adding the post or the message number as well.

The basic template for online sources is as follows:

Author, A. (date). Title of document [Format]. Retrieved from http://www.website.com

Here are a few examples of APA Style citations for some of the most common online formats.

Websites

To cite an entire website, include the full URL in text:

Google is one the most popular search engines nowadays. (http://www.google.com).

To cite a page or a particular document on a website, use the following example:

Gotter, A. (2017, April 20). How to Conduct a Social Media Audit [Blog Post]. Retrieved from http://www.socialmediaexaminer.com/how-to-conduct-social-media-audit/

Online reference without an author and date:

Make sure your site’s ready for mobile-friendly Google search results. (2010, October 13). Retrieved from https://support.google.com/adsense/answer/6196932?hl=en

Press Releases

Citing press releases is very simple in APA:

American Psychological Association. (2017). Prospect High School Teacher Earns APA Award For Excellence[Press release]. Retrieved from http://www.apa.org/news/press/releases/2017/04/prospect-high.aspx

Keep in mind that for press releases found on press release websites such as PRNewswire, the author can be found at the bottom of the release and credit should go to the author rather than the PR website:

Mazda North American Operations. (2017). Mazda Announces Appointment of Dino Bernacchi as Chief Marketing Officer for US Operations [Press release]. Retrieved from http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/mazda-announces-appointment-of-dino-bernacchi-as-chief-marketing-officer-for-us-operations-300442441.html

Ebooks

To cite a whole ebook:

Fabiano Bruno and Pasman Hans. (2014). Trends, Problems and Outlook in Process Industry Risk Assessment and Aspects of Personal and Process Safety Management. Retrieved from https://www.free-ebooks.net/ebook/Trends-Problems-and-Outlook-in-Process-Industry-Risk-Assessment-and-Aspects-of-Personal-and-Process-Safety-Management

To cite a chapter in an ebook:

Lynch Patrick J and Horton Sara. (1997). Site Structure. In E. Editor (3.), Web Style Guide 3rd Edition. Retrieved from http://webstyleguide.com/wsg3/5-site-structure/2-semantic-markup.html

Online Journals

Online journals follow the same rules as their printed counterparts and have to include either the URL or the DOI:

Baker, K. (2016). Peer review as a strategy for improving students’ writing process. Active Learning in Higher Education, 17, 179-192. Doi: https://doi.org/10.1177/1469787416654794

Blogs

For blogs, include the title of the blog post and its URL along with the blogger’s name and the date of the publication.

S Bernazzani. (2016, September 16). 18 of the Best Personal Websites We’ve Ever Seen [Blog Post]. Retrieved from https://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/best-personal-websites#sm.00009azkeizmxdw111ejwezcrsmq2

Online Video and Audio

YouTube videos and videos found elsewhere on the web should include the screen name of the person who published the video along with their real name (or indicate if their real name cannot be determined).

Timmer E. (2014, November 14). iMovie for Beginners [Video file]. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZGG5kbMKmLo

To cite the video in the text, include the author or screen name and the date outside the brackets.

Audio podcast files should also include any other information such as the names of the producers, directors, and similar:

Armitage S. (2016, April 8). The Parable of the Solicitor and the Poet. Poetry with Simon Armitage. Podcast retrieved from https://podcasts.ox.ac.uk/series/poetry-simon-armitage

Forum Discussions

Forum posts should include the title of the message as well as the URL of the forum or discussion board. Use either the screen name or the author’s name (preferably both) and include identifiers such as post or message number in the brackets.

Cuthber J. (2017, April 17). Mercury stream in space [Msg 6]. Message posted to http://www.scienceforums.net/topic/104781-mercury-stream-in-space/

Email and Social Media

(M. Jones, personal communication, January 14, 2015)

Social Media can be referenced in three ways:

With a general URL similarly to the way you would cite an entire website:

The New York Times is one of the leading online publications keeping you up to date through their website and their Twitter account (https://twitter.com/nytimes)

As personal communication when readers will not be able to access the source (exchanged in a private message or a group on social media):

Sarah Jones (personal communication 2013, April 17) stated that online shopping is the most convenient for her family.

As a typical APA Style in-text citation and reference list entry:

Linus Torvalds [Linus__Torvalds]. (2013, March 30) Linux Foundation Training Prepares the International Space Station for Linux Migration https://t.co/rCNB5CbTI0 via @linuxfoundation [Tweet] Retrieved from https://twitter.com/Linus__Torvalds/status/318095850079399937

Wikipedia

Given the fact that wikis are often collaborative projects, it can be hard to establish the credibility of the wiki entry. As such, APA warns against using them in your papers. However, should the need arise, you can reference them in the following manner:

How to create a comic book text effect. (n.d.). Retrieved April 21, 2017 from the Scribus Wiki: https://wiki.scribus.net/canvas/How_to_create_a_comic_book_text_effect

How to Cite Online Sources Using MLA Style

The MLA (Modern Language Association) style is usually used to cite sources within the liberal arts and humanities.

Traditionally, in-text citations included the author’s last name and the page number. Obviously, this will not work for most online sources. For these, you should list the author’s name or whatever is at the beginning of the full citation. You may need to add other information to make the in-text citation clear. Website names should be avoided, but if you must use them, do not include the protocol information. So use “Blogging.com.com” and not “http://www.Blogging.com.com.”

Full citations in MLA require you to include the following information:

  1. Author and/or editor names (if available)
  2. Article name in quotation marks.
  3. Title of the website, project, or book in italics.
  4. Any version numbers available, including edition (ed), revisions, posting dates, volumes (vol), or issue numbers (no).
  5. Publisher information, including the publisher name and publishing date.
  6. Page numbers (p or pp) or paragraph numbers (par or pars).
  7. URL (without the https://), DOI, or permalink.
  8. Date you accessed the material (Date Accessed).The MLA also requires citing containers after your regular citation which can include TV series, collection of stories, or even an online article series.

    The basic structure for MLA style citation is:

    Author. Title. Title of container (self contained if book), other contributors (translators or editors), version (edition), number (vol and/or no), publisher, publication date, location (pages, paragraphs and/or URL, DOI, or permalink). Second container’s title, other contributors, version, number, publisher, publication date, location, date of access (if applicable).

    And here’s how to cite the most common online sources with MLA.

    Websites

    Citing websites requires including the date of access, since the information can change at any point in time, as well as the complete address for the site except for the “https://” part. If you’re citing a course or a department website, include that information as well.

    Steve Faulkner, Arron Eicholz, Travis Leithead, Alex Danilo. HTML 5.1 W3C Recommendation, 1 November 2016 W3C, 1 Nov. 2016, www.w3.org/TR/html51/. Accessed 19 April 2017

    A Page or Article on a Website or a Magazine:

    For an individual page on a website, list the author or alias if known, followed by the information covered above for the entire web site.

    Meyer Eric. “Practical CSS Grid: Adding Grid to an Existing Design.” A List Apart, 23 Mar. 2017, alistapart.com/article/practical-grid. Accessed 21 April 2017.

    Citing Comments on Websites:

    Ryan Hicks. Comment on “The Current State Of Authentication: We Have A Password Problem.” Smashing Magazine, 7 Jun 2016, 6:47 p.m. www.smashingmagazine.com/2016/06/the-current-state-of-authentication-we-have-a-password-problem/#comment-1289807

    An Article in an Online Scholarly Journal

    Aside from the information referenced above, online scholarly journals have to include page range or page numbers if the online journal has a print version. Otherwise, you need to list the URL, DOI, or a permalink.

    O’Regan John P. “English as a Lingua Franca: An Immanent Critique.” Applied Linguistics, vol. 35, issue 5, 2014, academic.oup.com/applij/article-abstract/35/5/533/175252/English-as-a-Lingua-Franca-An-Immanent-Critique?redirectedFrom=fulltext. Accessed 20 Apr. 2017

    E-mail (including E-mail Interviews)

    Jones, Mary. “Re: Shakespeare’s Sonnets.” Received by Julie Simmons, 13 Mar. 2014.

    Discussion Groups or Blog Posts

    Discussion groups, listservs, forum postings, or blog posts need to follow the same format as a standard web entry and include screen names if actual names are unknown. When both the screen and the real name are known, the real name is placed in brackets:

    JeffUMN. “Re: Could Alexander Have Expanded Further if He Lived?” Historum – History Forums. 8 July. 2015, historum.com/ancient-history/92657-could-alexander-have-expanded-further-if-he-lived.html. Accessed 19 Apr. 2017.

    Tweets or Other Social Media Updates

    Citing tweets requires using the Twitter handle as the author’s name and the tweet in its entirety. The time of the tweet needs to include the timestamp of the reader’s timezone.

    Indicating the access date is optional.

    @BillGates. “Not surprisingly, I agree: Thinking like a programmer helps you tackle all kinds of problems in life: http://b-gat.es/2nNhwMB.” Twitter, 17 Apr. 2017, 4:24 pm, twitter.com/BillGates/status/853962277531385862.

    YouTube Videos

    Similar to APA format, online videos and audio posts in MLA need to include as much information as possible. If the author and the uploader are the same person, you only need to include their name once. Otherwise, include the author’s name first.

    MakeUseOf. “Get Started with Scratch: Drag and Drop Visual Programming.” YouTube, 18 Apr 2017, www.youtube.com/watch?v=MxXeziGQnK8.

    Brenda Barron has been a good tutor on APA and MLA referencing

You can also read more on the Best Resource hubs on the internet